Great terrain, Snow, Layout, Access. Eclectic lodging
Too far from NY
I love this mountain. I've been here many times during my 4 trips to Utah.
The terrain is fantastic - It's got everything. Open Bowl, cruisers, trees, beginner, side country, back country.
I've seen people complain that there is too much traversing at Alta. I disagree. Take the Collins lift and find High Traverse. Wholly crap, its like a big marshmallow candy store. There is an unbelievable amount of wonderful routes every where you see. In fact, with the exception of avalanche ropes, if you see it you can ski it. Extrovert is an amazing cruiser. I have glided through Glory Hole chest deep in powder on more than 1 trip.
Alta has the best terrain and mountain layout of any mountain I've ever seen.
For 3 of my 4 trips we stayed in Park City and made day trips to different mountains. The last time there, we stayed right in the Little Cottonwood valley. This is definitely not for everyone, but I really enjoyed it. All the hotels have a real lodge atmosphere. The meals are included in a 'family style' dining room. It realy worked for us. We were there to ski and enjoy the non skiing time with other like minded people.
We have done the zippy Park City thing and that is great. My comment is that the local Alta lodging is often overlooked and is a great way to enjoy the down time of the best skiing in the world.